Having won 4-1 against the same opponents in Belfast on Friday night, it was Quinn Preston who led the way with a third period double to grab a valuable road win, with further goals from Ara Nazarian, Ben Lake, Jacob Friend and Daniel Tedesco earning them the spoils to wrap up a fine opening weekend of domestic action.
Dundee had the first chance of the game as a fortunate bounce saw the puck fall straight to Brendan Harms in front of goal, but he was denied by an excellent save from Tyler Beskorowany, while at the other end Sean Norris was allowed to skate in on Kevin Carr but his shot struck the shoulder of the Stars goaltender.
But the Giants were made to pay for after Travis Brown’s pass to the back post for Nazarian was only tipped onto the post as Anthony Rinaldi put the home side ahead at 4:25, the winger tapping in on Josh Brittain’s cross-crease pass (1-0) before Harms, who had just been denied twice on the breakaway, doubled their advantage at 5:55 when he picked up the rebound from his initial shot and wrapped it under the pads of Beskorowany. (2-0)
Adam Keefe burned the Giants’ timeout after the Stars’ second goal but it worked to perfection as Nazarian got them on the board just 16 seconds later, Carr batting the puck back to the edge of the right circle and the winger snapping in his second goal of the weekend at 6:11. (2-1)
Compared to the first seven minutes, the remainder of the period was rather short on chances, with Mark Cooper’s drive to the net stopped by the pad of Carr, with the Giants closing out the period with their first kill of the night as Brown sat for tripping.
An early penalty against Stars defenceman Craig Moore gave the Giants a powerplay opportunity to tie it up but they couldn’t connect, despite some excellent work from Ciaran Long on the man advantage, and then Greg Printz couldn’t pull the trigger on a two-on-one breakaway when faced by Carr.
It felt like it was going to be a period low on scoring chances, with James Phelan denied on the breakaway by Beskorowany and then Lake having a shot saved by Carr, but a slashing call against Phelan put the Giants on the powerplay that allowed them to tie the game heading into the third.
Carr had already flashed the glove to deny Printz earlier in the powerplay when Mark Cooper put the puck on a plate for Lake to tap in at 36:05 to level proceedings (2-2), and Belfast could have headed in at the intermission ahead had Friend’s late deflected shot found twine instead of the post.
But Friend wouldn’t have to wait long for his first goal in teal as just 2:54 into the final frame he did grab what would prove to be the game-winning goal as he fired on net from the high slot and a slight nick off a man in front meant the puck evaded Carr’s grasp and nestled in the back of the net. (2-3)
Still the Stars were not out of it as Harms had another chance come off the post with Beskorowany beaten, but the clinching goal would come at 46:59 as Carr failed to cover a loose puck in front of goal and Preston was on hand to stab it in on the backhand to put daylight between the teams. (2-4)
From there it was all Belfast as the visitors looked to close the game out in style, and after Charlie Curti pinged a shot off the crossbar, Preston grabbed his second as he snapped a fine low shot past Carr from the right circle at 51:54 (2-5) and, but for an outstanding save from the Stars goaltender, he could have had a hat-trick after he jinked past two defenders but couldn’t find the net one more time.
Instead, Tedesco rounded things off with a fine solo strike of his own at 55:35, set into the zone and delaying perfectly to spin and fire home to complete the scoring (2-6), with Keefe’s men closing things out comfortably on the powerplay after Chris McKay was penalised for tripping with seconds remaining.
Next up, the Stena Line Belfast Giants remain on the road, with fixtures against Fife Flyers, Guildford Flames, and Cardiff Devils, before returning to Champions Hockey League action against EC Red Bull Salzburg at The SSE Arena, Belfast on Tuesday 10 October. Tickets are available here.